OK, I finally gave into the pressure. For weeks people have asked me why I haven't written about Metropolitan Market. Honestly, the reason is really simple: it's just too easy. Easy meaning it's only THE pinnacle of the ultimate grocery shopping experience. Sometimes I don't even buy anything when I go there. I just want to go to there, wander around and try to absorb the magic.
So, why the change of heart? Frankly, it's been a busy week, and easy looked real good to me. Real good. Don't spread it around. ...
Now before you get the wrong idea about me, like I have a thriving money tree at home, I don't. Met Market is a once a week destination, otherwise I would be broke. And don't get me wrong, that is not a criticism. Taking a small loan out to shop there is really quite OK by me. OK, I jest a little for effect.
Nice things cost money. A pleasing atmosphere costs money. Good employees cost money. You get the idea. Met Market is my treat or my target destination when I need something hard to find like salted capers, candied rose petals or preserved lemons.
Speaking of fun finds, when the French's Fried Onions for your green been casserole isn't impressive enough, The Met offers Lar's Imported Crispy Onions for just a tad bit more. Naturally they are located where, by the canned green beans.
Looking for the elusive gourmet lentil? You'll find red, French green, petite crimson and black beluga lentils along with your everyday standard, the brown lentil. Sounds a little like were talking about strains of weed. So a friend says. ...
You can't beat the lovely produce section which is fresh and packed with meticulously arranged items or the meat department with all it's free range products including one of my favorite quick dinner meals the pre-made parmesan chicken for $8.99 a pound. One large piece feeds the husband and I, just add a side of pasta, some red sauce and a green salad.
Not too many great deals to find at The Met. You have to turn over a few rocks to find them, but they're there. Again, let me emphasize that I don't care. I don't go there looking for deals, but this week one did catch my eye, the Epicurean Butter on sale for 99 cents (reg. $3.99) for a 3.5 ounce container.
I've been curious about these flavor infused butters for some time, but at $3.99 each, I felt they were a little spendy not knowing their potential. On sale however, I purchased the chili lime to go on halibut and chardonnay shallot for my broccoli, and both are VERY tasty. The butter also comes in scampi, honey pecan, roasted garlic herb and pesto. ALL on sale through April 15, so load up!
Must haves for me at The Met are my Sevre & Belle sea salted butter in the little basket (am I right Pappi?) and my favorite soap Pre de Provence with Shea Butter, green tea or verbena. I'm starting to see a theme here: French stuff and butter. Mmmm.
There is so much to say about Metropolitan Market, I could write a book. If you are a "foodie" and have never been here, run don't walk to get there. It will change your life. Just be prepared to spend, but love every minute of it.
[Metropolitan Market, 2420 N. Proctor St., Tacoma, 253.761.3663, www.metropolitan-market.com]